Torsten Freltoft, PhD
CEOFounder of Sophion Bioscience, today Biolin Scientific
PLASTISENS: A SPIN-OUT FROM DTU NANOTECH WITH A PATENT-PENDING TECHNOLOGY
Combining sensor technology with an acute need = Handheld sensor for detection of antibiotics
Two specialists in Sensor Technology, Noemi Rozlosnik and Johannes Daprà, became aware of the fact that there is a problem with antibiotics in food that requires a technological solution. They soon realized that this was a more common problem than first anticipated at a meeting with The Danish Agriculture and Food Council.
Antibiotics are often found in milk, meat and fish and pesticide residues in fruit and vegetables. They therefore set off to solve this issue together with computer specialist Attila Sükösd. These three make up the initial PlastiSens team, and Torsten Freltoft joined them as CEO in 2014. CAPNOVA invested DKK 4 mio. in PlastiSens in the spring of 2015.
PlastiSens will initially focus on the dairy sector as Denmark is a major global provider of dairy products.
When dairy cows have mastitis, which is inflammation of the infected udder, the most common treatment is injection of antibiotics in the udder. Within a few days the cow will be cured, but the drug might remain present in its system for a longer time. Each drug has a specified withholding period during which it is still possible that traces of the antibiotic may be present in the milk. As the cow needs to be milked regardless of mastitis and withholding periods, the mishap may occur that this cow’s milk is mixed with regular pure milk from healthy cows. There are 150-200 such incidents of contaminated milk being mixed together with pure milk in the milk truck alone in Denmark.
The dairy farmer or dairy truck driver can easily test the milk using PlastiSens in-line sensor, thereby ensuring that contaminated milk isn’t mixed with ”pure” milk from other farmers.
PlastiSens’ handheld sensor for antibiotic detection is a fast and accurate alternative to current off-line and in-line tests. The short analysis time and broad detection range allow quick on-site quality checks to reduce food waste caused by cross-contamination.
PlastiSens ApS received funding for the development project MILQAS under the Horizon 2020 programme of the European Commission